Researchers Have Linked High Levels of 'Good' Cholesterol with Death

Good cholesterol or HDL has long been associated with being beneficial for health; however, it turns out that it may not be as good as you think. Cholesterol, which is a fatty substance known as a lipid, plays a vital role in the normal functioning of the body.

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Researchers Have Linked High Levels of 'Good' Cholesterol with Death

Highlights

  1. Good cholesterol has been associated with being beneficial for health
  2. Cholesterol is a fatty substance known as a lipid
  3. The study had a team analyzing data of about 1,16, 000 people
Good cholesterol or HDL has long been associated with being beneficial for health; however, it turns out that it may not be as good as you think. Cholesterol, which is a fatty substance known as a lipid, plays a vital role in the normal functioning of the body. But according to the researchers at the University of Copenhagen in Denmark, the excess of good cholesterol can also raise risk of death. The findings suggested that people with extremely high levels of good cholesterol have a higher mortality rate as compared to people with normal levels.

The study had a team analyzing data of about 1,16, 000 people. They were followed up for an average of about six years. The results suggested over 10,500 deaths.

For the men with excessively high levels, the mortality rate was 106 percent as compared to the normal group, while for women, it was found to be around 68 percent higher than normal groups.

"These results radically change the way we understand 'good' cholesterol. Doctors have been used to congratulating patients who had a very high level of HDL in their blood. But we should no longer do so, as this study shows a dramatically higher mortality rate," said Borge Nordestgaard, Professor at the University of Copenhagen in Denmark.

"It appears that we need to remove the focus from HDL as an important health indicator in research at hospitals and at the general practitioner," Nordestgaard said.

On the other hand, people with extremely low levels of HDL in the blood were also at increased risk of mortality, the researchers claimed.

The people with medium levels of HDL in the blood had the lowest mortality. For women, it was 2.4 Nano moles per liter (nmol/L), while for men, it wasthe level was 1.9 nmol/L.

With Inputs from IANS

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